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Early-life stress leads to sex-dependent changes in pubertal timing in rats that are reversed by a probiotic formulation.
Cowan, Caitlin S. M.
Puberty marks the beginning of a period of dramatic physical, hormonal, and social change. This instability has made adolescence infamous as a time of "storm and stress" and it is well-established that stress during adolescence can be particularly damaging. However, prior stress may also shape the adolescent experience. In the present series of experiments, we observed sex-specific effects of early-life maternal separation stress on the timing of puberty onset in the rat. Specifically, stressed females exhibited earlier pubertal onset compared to standard-reared females, whereas stressed males matured later than their standard-reared counterparts. Further, we demonstrated that a probiotic treatment restores the normative timing of puberty onset in rodents of both sexes. These results are in keeping with previous findings that probiotics reverse stress-induced changes in learned fear behaviors and stress hormone levels, highlighting the remarkable and wide-ranging restorative effects of probiotics in the context of early-life stress.
Development , Early‐life stress , Maternal separation , Microbiota–gut–brain axis , Probiotic treatment , Puberty , Rats , Rodents
Cowan, C. S. M. and Richardson, R. 'Early-life stress leads to sex-dependent changes in pubertal timing in rats that are reversed by a probiotic formulation', Developmental Psychobiology, In Press, doi: 10.1002/dev.21765
© 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Cowan CSM, Richardson R. Early‐life stress leads to sex‐dependent changes in pubertal timing in rats that are reversed by a probiotic formulation. Developmental Psychobiology, 2018;00: 1–9, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1002/dev.21765. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving."